Genuine antique Victorian tiles, handmade and hand-colored by 19th century artisans, were not merely installations but also works of art in both exterior and interior spaces. Geometric, floral and mosaic were in vogue, patterns that have long surpassed their origins in the Victorian epoch from 1830 to 1901. Emerging from the gothic revival and Romantic movements, geometric motifs have been recreated through various periods in history. Octagonal floor tiles began on Victorian flooring in bathrooms, fireplace hearths, porches and kitchens. Design trendsetters have continued to utilize squares, hexagons, octagons, triangles, and rectangles in newer hues, silhouettes and finishes.
A hugely popular design of octagonal floor tiles through time is the octagon and dot scheme. The classic Victorian pattern is also highly favored by designers for wall tiles because it can look either understated or on point in its simplicity. This geometric style gets its name from the small dot of a diamond formed by joining four diagonal sides, made to be small, from four separate octagons. Blue and white had been the color palette of choice, brought on the invention of new printing technology. It has reappeared as white octagons with black or white dots in contemporary residences at present.
Art nouveau during the Edwardian age later reworked geometric designs into natural hues and figures that octagons and dots were fitted into floral motifs in classic English abodes. Colonial and heritage houses in the Americas absorbed geometric as well as Old World Spanish styles and again they turned up in pre-war buildings in the New World. During the Roaring ’20s, they were dressed in warm earth colors to complement traditional hardwood trimmings while in the ’30s were given vintage Hollywood chrome, metal and more glossy surfaces along with sunburst designs. These decades gave birth to the art deco movement, still a significant champion of geometric patterns.
Although octagonal floor tiles took a break in the ’40s and ’50s, they resurfaced in orange and lime green bathroom and shower floors in the ’70s. Geometric tiles stayed for the coffee and tan kitchen and foyer floors of the ’80s and remain today in restored Victorian, colonial, vintage, retro and contemporary abodes. From big names in tiling like American Olean, Roto Zip, Pergo and HR Johnson came surfaces like matte, glass, encaustic, stone, textured, mosaic, satin and glossy. Octagon and dot tiles are now built from such materials as travertine, slate, vitrified clay, stone, terracotta, quarry, granite, sandstone, porcelain, ceramic, limestone, glass and marble.